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Poster: swamprabbit Date: Nov 2, 2007 9:18am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Creating Your Own Dead

I have lately been thinking about what a subjective experience the Grateful Dead "phenonmenon" really is. In reading these forum posts it is remarkable how much difference of opinion there is among deadheads. We all have strong ideas about favorites years, songs, shows, etc. All of these opinions have been shaped by factors like our age, how we were introduced to the band, the shows we attended (or didn't), substances consumed, etc, etc, etc. We all basically create our own version of the band and its music.
I used to grow angry when I would read reviews on this site bashing a show that I thoroughly enjoyed. How could anyone trash what to me was a life-altering and special experience? However, over time I came to realize that it really isn't important. We are all reflecting this material through are own individual mental prisms. Even people who are largely unfamiliar with the band and its music create their own version of the Dead (often more influenced by their perceptions of deadheads than the band itself). I have shocked many a Dead novice by hitting then with the acoustic stuff on REckoning (For the Faithful). Many have assumed that the Dead were simply a hard-rocking 60s era "psychedlic" band and had no idea of the depth and variety of their material.

Members of the band have commented on this from time to time - mentioning that shows they thought were great didn't go over that well with the audience and vice versa. One of the things that sets this band apart from the rest is that they made the decision to play whatever they felt like rather than pandering to the audience. A show I attended in Atlanta (3/21/93) offers a good example. The show is packed with "new" songs and includes virtually no extended jams. But the music was energetic and boys seemed to be having such a good time that you couldn't help but enjoy yourself (Garcia even waved to those of us who had the misfortune of sitting behind the stage as he exited). Anyway, just glad to have been a part of something that is almost impossible to explain to those who are not "in the know." Your thoughts?

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Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Nov 2, 2007 9:52am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

Couldn't agree with you more. As I've always said, what is a 5+ star show to one person may be a 2 star to another. The band and it's music affects each one of us in a different and unique way, and I think that is one of the main reasons so many have dedicated so much time to this music. Where else can you get the feeling that the band is playing just for you? How many show were you at that you could have sworn Jerry looked right at you and began playing just what you wanted to hear? The music is so multi-faceted that each show and each song has different elements that either excite us or possibly turn us off. And, for me anyway, I find that as I go back and re-visit shows I haven't listened to in a long time, I will often find that I am hearing different things and my opinion is changed completely (see my post today regarding the second night at Richmond). Almost every day I find myself "re-discovering" shows and replacing my "favorite show" with yet another. How can you get bored with this? Don't think I ever will.

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Poster: stilldead77 Date: Nov 2, 2007 10:04am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

16 years, i never get bored, especially over the past two years on here. You guys are a trip, with a wealth of knowledge, tips, tricks and shows that are brand new to me and/or rediscovered.

Sure there are shows we all agree on and there are others you would think I was crazy for dancing to in my music room. Many dynamics, many moons, too crazy to explain, who would listen anyway.

Listen to the music play.

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Poster: Scrim Date: Nov 2, 2007 2:53pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

An interesting thought: Jerry and the band never experienced a Grateful Dead concert. They had no clue what it was like to go to a show.

Too bad they couldn’t have sat on the other side of the stage at least once. I'll bet they would have had a lot of fun!

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Poster: amosearle Date: Nov 2, 2007 6:06pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

I was at that Atlanta show, and was in a similar boat. I wasn't rocked by the music so much as the people and the annual spring reunion of friends that particular show. Some of the brightest and sharpest and some of the dimmest and dullest people I've known have all been part of the whole Dead experience. A lot of factors, people, turbulence, and resonance come together at a show. I'm convinced that creative energy all hits us how it will at any given time.

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Poster: Toadsmoker Date: Nov 2, 2007 10:53am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

I like Brooks and Dunn.

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Poster: mcgannahan Date: Nov 2, 2007 6:02pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

the best years were 75, and 95. who can deny that?

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Poster: Toadsmoker Date: Nov 3, 2007 7:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Creating Your Own Dead

'75 was Outlaw Country, Willie, Waylon, and the Boyz. '95 was TLC.